Radio Taiwan International
Steam locomotives in Taiwan with their puffing chimneys and piercing whistles hark back
to a bygone age and are popular with tourists. But recently there have also been complaints of air and noise pollution related to the attractions.
The Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) on Tuesday defended its operation of five steam locomotives based in the central county of Changhua. Lai Hsing-lung, head of the TRA’s Rolling Stock Department, said the trains run on low-sulfur smoke-free coal. He said this fuel is more expensive but is entirely consumed. It is thus not as much of a pollutant as some environmentalists may suppose.
Lai also said that the locomotives have been restored at great expense of time and effort and cannot simply be mothballed. [FULL STORY]